...free the chattanooga choo choo...


I tend to be a bit spontaneous. One day I found myself humming that Chattanooga Choo Choo song and it hit me; I have no idea what the Chattanooga Choo Choo is. So I grab my friend the Cap'n Jay and on a whim we find ourselves on the road to unlock one of the least important mystery's ever. What is the Chattanooga Choo Choo? Does it still exist today? Why is that tune so catchy? It was less than 24 hours since I had the idea to head to Chattanooga, sometimes I feel bad that I rope Jay into my hair brained schemes. But he could always say no.

I'm a train buff. My grandfather worked as a yard master for the old Jersey Central line. I have romantic visions of hopping trains and on the ride up to Chattanooga I picture wonderful images of what this train once was and still is. I mean it has to be in a museum or something, it has it's own song damn it.

We made it to Chattanooga in six or seven hours and went straight to the site advertised extensively on billboards. But there was one thing the signs failed to mention...the Chattanooga Choo Choo was now a Holiday Inn. I was stunned, my heart broken. If you don't believe me go to www.choochoo.com. This once glorious machine is not reduced to housing tourists, diners, and arcades. Oh, and one of those damn "take an old-time photo" places. This hurt me, this really hurt me. My romantic vision spoiled. But what could I expect from a city that is the proud home of the Tow Truck Drivers Hall of Fame. I guess I expected a little too much. This spoiled one of my childhood dreams and ranks on my list of biggest disappointments. What a shame, it deserves so much more. So I say; "Free the Chattanooga Choo Choo. Unleash it to seek it's past glory once more."
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